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Walnut Creek Magazine

Curbside Carryout: The New Normal

May 20, 2020 04:25PM ● By Pam Kessler

Last week, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced guidelines for the state’s restaurants to reopen their dining rooms in a 12-page document. It paints a picture of what the future of sit-down dining in the Bay Area will be like: servers in face masks, tables spaced at least six feet apart, and rigorous cleaning protocols. It makes sense to provide guidelines in preparation to let people inside, but since this remains unattainable and weeks away most likely weeks away in Contra Costa County, restaurants continue to face the difficult task of pivoting to carryout food operations and using their creativity to come up with new menus.

Below are some of the Walnut Creek restaurants doing takeout, along with a link to who's open in Lafayette. (here

Benvenuti Ristorante is back with family-style lasagnas and ravioli to take home and so is Massimo's with a new online menu and a nice selection of wines by the bottle to go. We also heard Crepes Ooh la la remerged dishing sweet and savory galettes. Call ahead or go online for current days and hours of operation. We love Chef Kev's new menu at Walnut Creek Yacht Club, his new pickup food options include oysters, lobster rolls, and mac n cheese. As they make plans moving forward, Kevin says covering their parking lot in turf with four-top tables is one option to consider. 

After closing completely for almost two months, Oke PokeButtercup DinerModern China, and Main Street Kitchen are back with creative beverages and dishes to go. If you need a little comfort between two slices of bread, there's nothing more satisfying than a sandwich from Morucci's Deli. The restaurant at Diablo Hills Golf Course, The Greenery, is stepping it up with daily family-style prime rib and salmon piccata specials. 

Sunrise Bistro is making magic with chicken salad on beds of greens and big BLT's. Havana is getting high marks for its mojitos, boxed meal deals, and piles of ribs. You can order pies, subs, and salads from Extreme Pizza plus load your online cart with staples for the fridge.

You’ll find flatbreads and pasta at 54 Mint, chow mein and mango chicken at Dragons Pond, tacos, enchiladas, and burritos at TacosWalnut Creek and take home pizza pie kits at Slice House. Burgers, beers, and boozy shakes at Broderick and barbecue, prime rib, and discounted bottles of wine at Bounty Hunter

The entire menu at Vanda Thai makes us drool, but do indulge in pad thai noodles, spicy basil chicken, and yellow curry. Pinkies bacon, pesto, pepperoni pizza is taking social media by storm

 Breakfast at The Original Hick’ry Pitt comes in all shapes and sizes, we like the $14.99 California Rollers and build-your-own rib platters.

Sauced is doing family-style dinners—for $95 feed 4-6 a mixed grill of ribs, sausage, pulled pork, corned bread, and two sides. Get a growler and pretzel at Bierhaus plus a pantry full of meat, dairy, and produce. True Food Kitchen has a killer kale salad and the Big Cobb at Lettuce is a healthy pile of bliss.

A community treasure, Rocco’s is keeping us fed with $39.95 with an Italian feast of pasta, meatballs, salad, garlic bread, and wine. The restaurant is also discounting pizzas by 20%. 

If you're in the mood for a big fat burger, ahi poke tacos or garlic fries, go to Gott's, but if it's a big fat sandwich you crave, head to Ike's.

Need a little caffeine? Philz WC is doing curbside service 7 am-2 pm daily. Brioche de Paris is pouring artisanal cups 8 am-3 pm. Perennial Peet’s coffee cultists are caffeinated at walk-up windows, safely  Starbucks is teasing its die-hards with dreams of Iced Caramel to hold on until mid-June, and Coffee Shop is coming back with a new pastry menu. 

Who else is open? Lottie's, Cream, Kacha Thai, Tomatina, Fleming’s, Toyo Sushi, Torsap Thai, Original Mel’s, China Palace, Mooyah, Sweet Affair Bakery, Manakish Oven, Masses, Vanessa’s Bistro, Yalla, Chicken Pie Shop, Peony Garden, Pasta Primavera, Nama Sushi, Kabob House, Teleferic Barcelona, Burger IM, and so many more.

Order-out often. Wear a mask in public. Help our restaurants survive. 

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